Coin 'connected credit card' for Apple's iOS devices delays launch to 2015

Posted:
in iPhone edited August 2014
The makers of Coin -- a Bluetooth-enabled "connected card" designed to allow users to store magnetic stripe information for multiple credit and debit cards on a single device -- on Friday announced that they would delay a full launch until next year, but would begin sending out 10,000 "beta" units to pre-order customers sooner.

Coin


Coin's executives cited manufacturing issues when explaining the delay, according to CNET. The device, announced last November, had been slated to ship this summer.

At least 1,000 customers have already been issued preproduction Coin units, and the company will now expand that to at least 10,000 in lieu of a full launch. Backers should receive emails allowing them to claim their beta device in the next few days.

Coin works by loading card information using a companion smartphone application and dongle which connects to the Coin via Bluetooth. Each Coin can store up to eight cards at a time in its onboard memory, and pressing a small button switches between cards and displays the currently-selected card an embedded e-ink screen.

The device drew equal parts applause and skepticism when it was announced. The possibilities for increase convenience are apparent, but many pointed out possible security implications -- including the possible financial harm thieves could do to a person by swiping a single Coin, rather than being forced to try for a full wallet.

Additionally, others panned Coin for the lack of support for the emerging chip-and-signature standard that has begun to expand among U.S. card issuers. Coin CEO Kanishk Parashar said that the company has yet to begin exploring the addition of a chip, and is instead focused on launching its first version.

"What we'll do is that once we get through this first shipment of Coins, we'll be able to have enough resources to do an R&D project," he told CNET.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    It's worth noting that the beta version will have limited functionality. Those who opt for a beta unit will be given a discount on the full version when it is released.
  • Reply 2 of 26
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 969member
    Looks like it's done incredibly cheap, look at that 1985 Timex watch display. And what are the dimensions? Because if it is bigger, thicker, and heavier than having credit cards in your wallet, what's the point?

    iPhone is going to wipe this off the map.
  • Reply 3 of 26
    tleviertlevier Posts: 104member
    Remember, it's $100 for each COIN and the battery lasts for 2 years. So, just work $50/yr into your budget for this convenience.
  • Reply 4 of 26

    I wish these people would wait until they have an actual product or service.

     

    Getting Googled (? overpromised + underdelivered) by tech seems to be the new norm.

  • Reply 5 of 26
    jkichlinejkichline Posts: 1,352member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by tyler82 View Post



    Looks like it's done incredibly cheap, look at that 1985 Timex watch display. And what are the dimensions? Because if it is bigger, thicker, and heavier than having credit cards in your wallet, what's the point?



    iPhone is going to wipe this off the map.

    I have a Coin coming my way and got each for $50. It's the dimensions of a credit card because it replaces all of the credit cards with one. The display is low-power LED and really is just used for indicating status and which card is active so it doesn't need to be fancy. It connects via Bluetooth LE to your phone for adding cards and managing it. Theres also a lot of built in security features like if you leave it on the table, it will warn you on your phone, etc.

     

    I'm excited to try it out for sure and am signing up for beta!

     

    Even if iPhone 6 comes with NFC or iBeacon wallet (still unknown), it's NOT going to replace the Coin. Why? Because every place on earth still uses card swipes. Also, are you going to hand your phone to a waitress to pay for your order? I think the iPhone is going to be shooting to reinvent purchasing, but Coin is good for backwards compatible credit card swipes.

  • Reply 6 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jkichline View Post

     

    I have a Coin coming my way and got each for $50. It's the dimensions of a credit card because it replaces all of the credit cards with one. The display is low-power LED and really is just used for indicating status and which card is active so it doesn't need to be fancy. It connects via Bluetooth LE to your phone for adding cards and managing it. Theres also a lot of built in security features like if you leave it on the table, it will warn you on your phone, etc.

     

    I'm excited to try it out for sure and am signing up for beta!

     

    Even if iPhone 6 comes with NFC or iBeacon wallet (still unknown), it's NOT going to replace the Coin. Why? Because every place on earth still uses card swipes. Also, are you going to hand your phone to a waitress to pay for your order? I think the iPhone is going to be shooting to reinvent purchasing, but Coin is good for backwards compatible credit card swipes.




    Seems like a short lived product with the US moving to the chip & pin cards in 2015 - and you might get a shock outside the US - most of Europe is chip & pin and has been for the last 5-10 years.

  • Reply 7 of 26
    gordygordy Posts: 1,004member
    I preordered one. This is disappointing.

    Edit: Apparently I'm one of the beta guys...
  • Reply 8 of 26
    takeotakeo Posts: 426member
    Chip and pin has been the norm in Canada for years. Can't remember the last time I swiped a card.
  • Reply 9 of 26
    jkichlinejkichline Posts: 1,352member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by markm49uk View Post

     



    Seems like a short lived product with the US moving to the chip & pin cards in 2015 - and you might get a shock outside the US - most of Europe is chip & pin and has been for the last 5-10 years.


    Understood, and I am sort of sick of the dang magnetic strips that wear out, but I live in the US and don't travel outside too much so that's not a big deal to me.

     

    Either way, it's cool that companies are trying to fix this issue.  I think this is a stopgap, but kind of a neat experiment.

     

    One thing that irritates me (and may not work with Coin) is most merchants now require you to give the card to the cashier, even though you're supposed to swipe the card yourself. What's the point? They check the last four digits on the card... but just swipe the dang thing yourself then!   The less interaction I need the better.  If I could just walk past a sensor and it picks up the transaction in my pocket... all the better.

  • Reply 10 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jkichline View Post

     

    They check the last four digits on the card... but just swipe the dang thing yourself then!   The less interaction I need the better.  If I could just walk past a sensor and it picks up the transaction in my pocket... all the better.


     

    Swiping it yourself is an anti-skimming measure. It's supposed to remain in full view of you and never enter any sort of swiping device. If you swipe successfully, and then they swipe, call the cops.

     

    They already have contactless cards in the US. McDonalds has deployed along with 7-11 and some other places. It works very well.

  • Reply 11 of 26
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,454member
    markm49uk wrote: »

    Seems like a short lived product with the US moving to the chip & pin cards in 2015
    Yup. I was very interested in this device when I read about it a year ago. Now that it's been delayed a year, it's dead.

    Visa & MasterCard, are aggressively pushing chip & pin, after merchants stalled for the last decade. But since Target and other major retailer number thefts, they seem to have the ammunition to make it happen.

    This is too little too late. What happens when their investors pull out because the market for a swiping card replacement will be the early adopters of chip and pin. I fully expect to request chip and pin replacement cards from my providers as soon as they are offered. And even if swiping is still offered, every major retailer will probably offer chip and pin by 2016 and phase out the old swipe cards soon thereafter ...
  • Reply 12 of 26
    markm49uk wrote: »
    jkichline wrote: »
     
    I have a Coin coming my way and got each for $50. It's the dimensions of a credit card because it replaces all of the credit cards with one. The display is low-power LED and really is just used for indicating status and which card is active so it doesn't need to be fancy. It connects via Bluetooth LE to your phone for adding cards and managing it. Theres also a lot of built in security features like if you leave it on the table, it will warn you on your phone, etc.

    I'm excited to try it out for sure and am signing up for beta!

    Even if iPhone 6 comes with NFC or iBeacon wallet (still unknown), it's NOT going to replace the Coin. Why? Because every place on earth still uses card swipes. Also, are you going to hand your phone to a waitress to pay for your order? I think the iPhone is going to be shooting to reinvent purchasing, but Coin is good for backwards compatible credit card swipes.


    Seems like a short lived product with the US moving to the chip & pin cards in 2015 - and you might get a shock outside the US - most of Europe is chip & pin and has been for the last 5-10 years.

    The US is not doing chip and PIN for whatever reason. They are doing chip and sign. So it only validates that the real card is present at the transaction, but doesn't authenticate the purchaser with a PIN. So it will prevent the use if this coin card. I suspect people will have a hard time using this card. Any time the clerk needs to see the card the transaction will be cancelled since you don't have the real card with the signature, etc.
  • Reply 13 of 26
    sflagelsflagel Posts: 622member
    chip and sign? so in a restaurant, they still won't have portable credit card terminals so paying takes ages?
  • Reply 14 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Phone-UI-Guy View Post



    The US is not doing chip and PIN for whatever reason.

     

    I think the reason is that PIN has become associated with debit and their unreasonable fees. I noticed a local fast food restaurant trying to charge $1 for debit. The debit networks have themselves to blame for letting it happen, whereas Visa and Mastercard's stand against fees let them win. 

     

    And the fact that US credit cards can be processed through an associated debit network (Mastercard=Cirrus, Visa=Plus) with a pin which then counts as a cash advance.

     

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sflagel View Post



    chip and sign? so in a restaurant, they still won't have portable credit card terminals so paying takes ages?

     

    It's called not seeming like they're trying to kick you out. Cause people pay for the experience when you eat out. Denny's is an example of speed: you just take the check up to the counter to pay.

  • Reply 15 of 26
    sflagelsflagel Posts: 622member
    Not kicking you out means not bringing you the bill unprompted. but once I ask for the bill, it's much more convenient to just use chip and pin at the table, rather than have the waiter take my card away, and return with pieces of paper to sign. not to mention the added security.
  • Reply 16 of 26
    bighypebighype Posts: 148member

    What a pointless technology. It will be obviated by a mobile payment system before it even launches.

  • Reply 17 of 26
    ksecksec Posts: 1,567member
    Quote:


     Because every place on earth still uses card swipes


    That is funny because US is the Last place on earth that is still using card swipes. And there are countries already have time table to end card swipes, and many are *waiting* for US to get their EMV and end card swipes once and for all.

     

    As much as i love the idea of coin, magnetic stripe has no place in our future. 

  • Reply 18 of 26
    nick29nick29 Posts: 111member

    I currently live in Poland, many stores and restaurants have proximity card readers, no swiping involved. It's standard practice to bring the card readers to your table to complete the transactions, you never hand your CC to a waiter who leaves your sight. Perhaps if Apple incorporates NFC into their iPhones, this will encourage stores to buy new readers. America is well behind Europe when it comes to this tech, which is a basic matter of security.

  • Reply 19 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jkichline View Post

     

    …Theres also a lot of built in security features like if you leave it on the table, it will warn you on your phone, etc.


    Cute but I hardly call that "security". I read on Coin's web site that there is a "tap code" (i.e. password) but they don't say how many characters. I'm guessing four numbers - weak but better than nothing I suppose. Their website states they use "128-bit or 256-bit encryption". Why two forms? If you're going to use 256-bit for part why not for all? Just sayin'. I'd prefer to see the real security types vet this thing before I'd consider using it.

     

    As convenient as this seems, I'm not comfortable with it. Many supposedly secure devices have been hacked and nothing that I've read about this card impresses me that it is any more secure. I don't think the first users of Coin will have many security problems; but if it does get popular, hackers will certainly target it. 

  • Reply 20 of 26
    Originally Posted by ksec View Post

    As much as i love the idea of coin, magnetic stripe has no place in our future. 




    Keep thinking that.

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